Day 291 | Monday, 4 January 2021
Let me introduce you to another Christmastide hymn as we wind down this season. It is “O Morning Star, How Fair and Bright” words: Philipp Nicolai, 1599, trans. By Catherine Winkworth, 1863; trans. St. 3 Lutheran Book of Worship, 1978.
1. “O Morning Star, how fair and bright thou beamest forth in truth and light, O Sovereign meek and lowly! Thou Root of Jesse, David’s Son, my Lord and Master, thou hast won in my heart to serve thee solely! Thou art holy, fair and glorious, all victorious, rich in blessing, rule and might o’er all possessing.”
2. “Thou heavenly Brightness! Light Divine! O deep within my heart now shine, and make there an altar! Fill me with joy and strength to be thy member, ever joined to thee in love that cannot falter; toward thee longing doth possess me; turn and bless me; here in the sadness eye and heart long for thy gladness!”
3. “What joy to know, when life is past, the Lord we love is first and last, the end and the beginning! He will one day, O glorious grace, transport us to that happy place beyond all tears and sinning! Amen! Amen! Come, Lord Jesus! Crown of gladness, we are yearning for the day of your returning.”
A more familiar hymn “Love Came Down at Christmas” words: Christina G. Rossetti, 1885. These are powerful words and words we might pay attention to as we open the pages of this new year. We might even want to make them a part of our daily living.
1. “Love came down at Christmas, Love all lovely, Love divine; Love was born at Christmas; star and angels gave the sign.”
2. “Worship we the God-head, Love incarnate, Love divine; worship we our Jesus, but where with for sacred sign?”
3. “Love shall be our token; love be yours and love be mine; love to God and neighbor, love for plea and gift and sign.”
A Christmastide Prayer:
“Holy Jesus, by taking human form you have honored all human life with your own divine dignity. Help us honor you by the gentleness and the reverence we show to your beloved brothers and sisters. Help us always to speak well of others and to interpret their actions in the kindest possible way. In situations of stress and conflict help us protect the dignity of everyone involved. Help us be faithful to all our commitments as you have been faithful to us. Help us forgive others as you have forgiven us. When we are in a position to relieve suffering, transform us from people who react with indifference to people who make a difference. When we ourselves are suffering, strengthen us with patience and self-control. Help us be agents of peace on earth and examples of goodwill to all. Glory to God in the highest. Amen”
“Each of us is an Innkeeper who decides if there is room for Jesus.”
Today: Prayers for those receiving the vaccine.
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Rev. Douglas Knopp, Pastor Emeritus